Wednesday, December 19, 2012
A house known for its 29,000-plus light display, which is synchronized to music, is creating quite the buzz through social media. Circulating through Facebook, the videos have made the light show a must-see Christmas wonderland.
“This place is worth the short trip,” remarked a Facebook user to a video post of the light show.
This phenomenal animated Christmas display is constructed by Camdenton resident Lance Lindner. With the help from his family, friends and neighbor, Lindner started hanging lights right after Halloween and finished the day before Thanksgiving.
“Without them I couldn’t have got it done,” Lindner stated.
This year’s synchronized display includes a 16-foot mega tree with 9,600 lights, seven individual trees that range from 1,000 to 400 lights per tree, four arches with 800 lights on each one, strobe lights, icicle lights that line the perimeter of the house and lights hung around every window, as well.
“Everywhere I run lights, I run red, white and green. Those are just my favorite colors,” said Lindner.
Visitors can tune their car radios to 87.9 FM to listen to the show as its computer-synchronized to renditions of eight songs including “Wizards in Winter” by Trans Siberian Orchestra, “A Mad Russian's Christmas” by Trans Siberian, “Nutrocker” by Trans Siberian, “Carol of Bells” by Monique Danielle, “Carol of Bells” by David Foster, “Amazing Grace techno edit,” “Jingle bells techno edit” and “Sandstorm” by Darude, which isn’t a Christmas song, but Lindner said has a great beat for the lights.
“It took me about eight hours per song to program,” said Lindner. “It takes a while, but I start in August.”
Lindner started five years ago with a basic GE 6-circuit system, and then a 32-circuit system three years ago and now has upgraded to a 64-circuit system. He said he has always dabbled in electronics, but his spark for taking traditional Christmas lights to an entertaining show came about after getting advice from his buddy who lives in St. Louis and now has a 300-circuit system.
“Next year I would like to add two more controllers, which will add 32 more circuits so then I’ll be at 96 circuits,” Lindner commented. “If I do a spiral tree, I’ll have 6,400 more lights. A spiral tree kind of spins, they are pretty neat. That’s what I would like to do.”
Lindner said he makes his purchases from Light-O-Rama after the holidays when they are discounted. In addition, he said the lights only increases his power bill by $50 for the month.
“It only goes up about 50 bucks because they hit intermittently,” he explained.
Besides growing each year with voltage and effects, Lindner has noticed more and more traffic outside his house. He said he averages about four to five cars a night and last Saturday he saw about 20 cars.
“There were a few people that saw it the first year, mostly friends and family and then they would tell some people. Then last year I noticed it picked up quite a bit and this year I would say it’s doubled over last year. So it’s just getting bigger and bigger every year,” Lindner said.
“I know one group of people that now it’s become their family thing. They like to come see the show the night of Thanksgiving after they eat dinner. They come over and they bring about three cars, which is neat. I’m glad to be a part of that,” he added.
For the Lindner family, decorating for the holidays is an important part of making the season merry.
“Christmas has always been big in our family,” Lindner recalled. “I’ve always remembered decorating as a kid, setting up my mom’s village and helping my dad with the outside Christmas lights.”
Lindner is currently a kitchen cabinet designer at Designer Kitchens and Baths in Osage Beach. He is married to his wife, Monica, and they have two girls, Sydney who is 8 years old and Payton who is 5 years old. As for Monica, Lindner said she likes the outcome of the lights but she doesn’t understand his patience as far as putting everything up. As for his girls, they say Santa will definitely find their house.
“I love it when my girls get out there and dance. I have speakers hooked outside to where you don’t have to listen to the radio in your car and they get out there and dance,” Lindner said.
The Lindner family hopes to spread the joy of Christmas to as many as possible and welcome people to drive by their exhibit. Lindner enjoys seeing everyone’s first initial response when they see his work.
“I heard a car pull up and the strobe lights went off. I was standing outside letting my dog out and all a sudden I heard, ‘oh wow,’” he remembered. “That’s what I love; when they first see it.”
Since his display has exploded on Facebook, Lindner said next year he is going to create a page for his show.
“I would like to hear comments what people think, what I could better or some ideas,” he said.
In the spirit of Christmas and giving back, next year the Lindner family also plans to organize a fundraiser for charitable organization of the girl’s choice. As for this year, Lindner’s wish is for snow.
“I just wish it would snow. That’s what I really want is to see it with some snow,” Lindner said.
People can visit the home located at 38 Ravenwood Drive in Camdenton, from dark-11 p.m. Monday-Thursday, and from dark-midnight, Friday-Sunday. Lindner said the display will be up until Jan. 1. Directions: Take North Highway 5 to Harvest Road and turn left on Harvest Road. At the stop sign at Old Highway 5, make a left and go about a quarter of a mile to a sign that says, “Ravenwood.” Follow the road around two turns, house is on the left.